How Trash Becomes Energy
Anderson Regional Landfill is Green Energy
Did you know that landfills with gas collection systems can recycle nearly 25% of the material deposited in the landfill? That makes landfills some of the largest recycling operations in the U.S. Here is the best part. The gas created and captured is re-used for energy transformation! From methane to megawatts, Anderson Landfill operated by Waste Connections is harvesting gas emissions as a renewable energy source for electricity. As organic waste breaks down in municipal solid waste landfills, methane gas is created. Landfill methane is normally consumed (incinerated) in a flare rather than being discharged to the atmosphere. The 12-year-old landfill gas-to-energy initiative provides an alternative to flaring. A vast majority of the landfills’ methane gas is harvested through a perforated piping system of drilled gas extraction wells. In a cooperative arrangement, Santee Cooper, also known as the South Carolina Public Service Authority, cleans the gas by removing the moisture content and runs it through power turbines that deliver electricity to the grid.
The biogas powered generating station has the capacity to produce 3.2 megawatts of Green Power using 20-cylinder engine generators. Residents of South Carolina have been making the commitment to help our environment by purchasing “blocks” of Green Power. The impact that these residents have on the environment is astounding. When residents sign up for just 2 blocks (200 kilowatt hours) of Green Power for 12 months at just two dimes a day, they are making the same environmental impact as not driving a car for almost three months. It’s a constant source of power that is running all the time, making Waste Connections-Anderson Regional Landfill a good neighbor and good environmental steward in the community.